Workforce Solutions Capital Area has received $45,000 from JFF and New Profit to design and launch a pilot initiative in October to implement the IBM SkillsBuild learning platform. This pilot will be part of the Workforce Development Board Digital Skills Pilot Initiative, led by JFF and New Profit, and funded by and IBM. 

Why it matters: Workforce Solutions Capital Area partners with IBM to offer the SkillsBuild digital learning platform to Central Texans. Our existing relationship with IBM positions us to utilize SkillsBuild as a resource to address the issue of how few training programs are financially accessible to low-income residents. 

WFS Capital Area offers 44 training programs in IT through our partners—ranging from Adobe Certified Associate, Cloud Administrator, Project Management & Agile Scrum, and more—and expanding SkillsBuild as an offering offers more opportunities to residents interested in pursuing careers in tech. 

Through this initiative, we will accomplish three goals: 

  1. Bridge the entry-level skills gap; 
  2. Increase opportunities for success by providing a stronger pre-training foundation for underrepresented populations in tech; and
  3. Engage Austin tech employers to hire using skills-based hiring practices with SkillsBuild as a resource. 

Leading our grant is Jessie Camarillo, Director of Technology Partnerships. 

This opportunity will help us by offering resources to grow a skilled workforce and engage tech employers in our region more intentionally to hire local, thereby diversifying their workforce,” Jessie said. 

“We aligned this initiative with our community’s new Hire Local Plan to increase diversity in the regional workplace, and with the proven and employer-led workforce development strategy behind our Capital Area Technology Workforce Coalition, a tech sector partnership driven to build the tech industry in Central Texas and develop a skilled workforce with local talent,” said Jessie. 

“We are joining tech executives around the Austin metro to work together and influence alignment around common solutions with awareness, training, hiring, and upskilling,” Jessie said. 

Workforce Solutions Capital Area is one of five workforce boards to receive this grant, and one of two in Texas. 

Learn more about the Workforce Development Board Digital Skills Pilot Initiative here. 

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